Certificate in Advising Small and Family Businesses (Cert. ASFB)

The Certificate in Advising Small and Family Businesses (Cert. ASFB) equips you to penetrate this market segment and develop business relationships with business owners in a meaningful and rewarding way.

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Ronald Wong
MBA, CFP®, ChFC®, CWM®, ChMA, AEPP, STEP Associate



Challenges of Small and Family Businesses in Singapore

Small and family businesses (i.e. SMEs) in Singapore is both an under-served and niche market segment that Financial Advisory Representatives (FAR) like yourself can explore. The unique needs within this market segment requires a synergy of customised insurance, investment and legal strategies that you can competently implement and coordinate after attending the Certificate in Advising Small and Family Businesses (Cert. ASFB) program.

According to Statistics Singapore, there are more than 190,000 Enterprises in Singapore, of which over 99% are Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). One of the most pressing and complex challenges faced by this segment is effectively managing business risks and ensuring business continuity due to the incapacity or death of the owner(s), and there is no means of predicting when untimely decisions may be necessitated in the event of ill-health or demise of the SME owner. The strategy to overcome such uncertainties is to ensure a strong solvency position within the company to weather through various storms such situations present, while strengthening the confidence of stakeholders such as customers, suppliers, creditors, internal staff and family members.

In family businesses, effective conflict management and succession planning are essential to realize such ‘family involvement’ goals and take a longer-term approach to decision-making. Here, liquidity can provide for equalisation and distribution planning to minimize conflicts and unhappiness among family members. FARs attuned to such challenges faced by owners of SMEs are well-positioned to provide customised solutions to help them navigate these challenges. The Certificate in Advising Small and Family Businesses (Cert. ASFB) equips you to penetrate this market segment and develop business relationships with business owners in a meaningful and rewarding way.

FARs who completed the Certificate in Advising Small and Family Businesses (Cert. ASFB) program have extensive knowledge to penetrate this market segment successfully. This 6-module course is conducted using a structured framework that offers insights into the challenges faced by small and family business owners and equips you to provide expert guidance and actionable advice to challenges that can be addressed using insurance and investment solutions

MODULE 1: Foundations in Advising Small and Family Businesses

The first module provides a foundational overview in advising the SME segment and discusses the potential opportunities when advising small and family businesses. An overview of 12 challenges business owners face and how insurance and investment solutions can be used to address them will provide you with an understanding of the opportunities this niche market segment provides.

MODULE 2: Qualitative Analysis: The Business Environment and Business Structure

  • The second module provides a qualitative framework for understanding the business environment and business structures, as well as the unique issues and challenges in each structure. You will have a deeper understanding of where to start, what to look for and how to engage their prospective clients.

MODULE 3: Quantitative Analysis: Company Financial Analysis

  • The third module equips you with the competency to conduct quantitative analysis of the business and identify potential financial pitfalls within the business, such as credit, cashflow and debtors’ risks, and be equipped to address them using various strategies and insurance products as a funding vehicle.

MODULE 4: The Buy-Sell Agreement and Establishing Business Valuation

The fourth module looks into the buy-sell agreement and how to design and coordinate a business exit strategy with legal professionals using insurance products as a funding vehicle to provide liquidity for the exit. You will also gain an appreciation of various valuation approaches and models used to ascertain the value of a business to facilitate the exit proposition.

MODULE 5: Exit Planning and Key Employee Strategies

The fifth module addresses the exit planning and succession issues of the business owner, and how to implement appropriate strategies to ensure a smooth exit and business continuity. You will also gain an appreciation of strategies that can be used to retain key employees for the long-term benefit of the business.

MODULE 6: Advising the Family Business

The final module addresses unique challenges and concerns of the family business and implement strategies to mitigate such challenges. You will learn how to analyse and understand the family dynamics using engagement models and frameworks and conduct scenario analysis to provide strategies to manage challenges unique to the family business.

This course is conducted over 6 weekly sessions comprising a total of 21 non-core CPD training hours comprising structured lectures, case studies and group discussions. At the end of the course, participants will undergo a MCQ assessment. Participants will be awarded the Certificate of Completion (Cert. ASFB) upon completion of the program.

Your investment for this program will be $2,000, before funding support.

Special corporate discount and group rates may apply. Contact us to find out more.

Please refer to the IBF website (http://www.ibf.org.sg) for details about the IBF-FTS scheme, and SSG website (https://www.myskillsfuture.sg/learn/) for information about SkillsFuture Credit. Term and conditions apply and are subject changes by the relevant authorities.

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